Barbecued turmeric snapper with sambal matah


  • Serves 4 people

Cooking whole fish on the barbecue is one of the great joys of summer. For this simple Indonesian-inspired version, most of the prep is in the spicy sambal. Serve with steamed rice and a crunchy bean sprout salad.

  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 baby snapper, skin slashed (about 750gm each)
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 30 gm fresh turmeric, coarsely chopped
  • For drizzling: grapeseed oil
  • Sambal matah
  • 1 tsp belacan (see note)
  • 4 red or golden shallots, thinly sliced
  • 4 kaffir lime leaves, thinly sliced
  • 3 each red and green birdseye chillies, thinly sliced, or to taste
  • 2 lemongrass stalks (white part only), thinly sliced
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • Juice of 2 limes
01   Heat barbecue to high heat. Pour lemon juice over fish, rubbing into cavities and incisions. Finely chop garlic and turmeric in a small food processor with 1 tsp sea salt, spread over fish and set aside.
02   For sambal matah, enclose belacan in foil and roast on a barbecue or in a hot oven until pungent (2-3 minutes). Crumble into a bowl, add remaining ingredients, season to taste with salt and set aside.
03   Wipe excess marinade from fish, drizzle with a little oil, then barbecue, turning occasionally, until cooked through (8-10 minutes). Serve hot with sambal matah.

Note Belacan is a shrimp paste available from Asian grocers.

View Full Site